The origins of wellness, however, are much older and even older. Aspects of the concept of well-being are firmly rooted in various intellectual, religious and medical movements in the United States and Europe in the 19th century. Feminist criticisms of the culture of well-being strongly defend what is wrong with it, but the embodiment of social problems is not new. Anyone working in the wellness industry looking for a path forward in this post-COVID-19 era should keep this appointment in mind.
In schools, hospitals and even prisons, advocates cite the self-empowering potential of wellness policies, pointing to raising morale and reducing stress. But without the emergence of Europe's middle classes, without the wealth and leisure offered by the Industrial Revolution, today's culture of well-being would not exist. Johnson & Johnson's Live for Life program, which became known as the prototype of large corporate workplace wellness programs, began in 1979. Influenced by her work, Hettler founded the annual National Welfare Conference at Stevens Point, now in its thirty-fifth year. By the early 2000s, many companies had implemented wellness programs, training and initiatives, but most of them targeted employees most at risk of illness.
A study of workplace wellness activities since the 1950s indicates that corporate wellness programs have benefited the company more than employees. More recently, feminist scholars have examined constructs of health by observing popular culture, drawing conclusions similar to those of nineteenth-century women's welfare historians. Well-being was so unknown at the time, Travis recalls, that he constantly had to spell the word when he used it on the phone. The main criterion for a small and medium-sized company to adopt a wellness program was its cost and profitability (cost-benefit of the program).
In North America, as well as in Europe, welfare plays a major role in the economy, but there are also many specialists in Hungary who work in this area. Wellness programs now span businesses and industries across the United States, promoting health and self-management strategies, while promising to increase productivity and reduce health care costs According to Reardon (199), true workplace wellness programs didn't really begin to exist until the mid-1970s. Dunn made a distinction between good health, the absence of disease, or the passive state of homeostasis and well-being as an active and continuous pursuit.